Christmas in July

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Photography Andy Arnfield – The Gourmet Grocer

In Australia we have a tradition of celebrating Christmas in July which is basically a meal with friends where you cook a traditional diner and swap secret santa gifts.  I’m not sure where this originated from but I’m guessing that it is because the real Christmas is sweltering in Oz and July is our coldest month of the year so it make you feel a bit more real to the Ex Pats. Australia is famous for two sweet treats which I have made festive with the addition of some not so traditional ingredients! The first being the good old ANZAC biscuit made using rolled oats, flour, sugar, butter,golden syrup, baking soda, boiling water and optionally desiccated coconut. Anzac biscuits have long been associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) established in World War I. And the  second being Rocky Road, a sweet jumble of marshmallow, fruit and nuts. There is really nothing difficult about either of theses recipes and everyone will be wanting more. Enjoy ;0)

Hazelnut Cranberry Coconut Oat Biscuits

Yield 20 small or 10 large biscuits

Ingredients

75g (1/2 cup) whole hazelnuts- roughly chopped
115g (3/4 cup) plain flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
165g (1 1/2 cups) rolled oats
165g (3/4 cup) caster sugar (superfine sugar)
45g (1/2 cup) desiccated coconut
1 cup dried cranberries
2 tablespoons boiling water
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
125g butter
100g white chocolate buttons

Method

1. Sift the flour and the ginger into a large bowl. Add the nuts, oats, coconut, cranberries and sugar. Stir to combine.

4. Melt butter and golden syrup in a saucepan. Once melted, in a separate bowl combine boiling water and bicarbonate of soda. When the mixture froths up add to the saucepan with the butter and golden syrup mixture.

5. Add melted butter mixture to dry ingredients. Mix well

6. Roll balls os the mixture in wet hands leaving space in between each biscuit and pressing down slightly

7. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

8. Melt the chocolate buttons in a double boiler until smooth and drizzle over the biscuits and leave to set.


CranberryHazelnutOatcookies

Photography Andy Arnfield – The Gourmet Grocer

 

Whitechristmasrockyrd

Photography Andy Arnfield – The Gourmet Grocer

White Christmas Rocky Road

Ingredients

375g white chocolate buttons
1/2 cup pistachio kernels
1/2 cup hazelnuts roughly chopped
2/3 cup shredded coconut
20 white marshmallows
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Method

Line base and sides of a 20cm square slice pan with baking paper allowing a 2cm overhang at both long ends. Place chocolate in a glass bowl over a pan of boiling water making sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl and melt chocolate until smooth. You can also use the microwave method zapping 3o seconds at a time until melted but you have to be careful as white chocolate can burn very easily,

Combine pistachios, hazelnuts coconut, marshmallows and cranberries in a large bowl. Pour over chocolate. Stir to coat.

Spoon mixture into prepared pan. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until set. Turn out onto a chopping board. Remove baking paper. Cut into squares  with a sharp knife so you cut clean through the fruit and nuts to give a stunning presentation.

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